Natural Recipes for Home and Garden


A Guide of Helpful Hints to Make Your Home & Garden Environmentally Friendly.  Homemade Remedies Which May be Alternatives to Household Hazardous Products.  Return to Household Hazardous Waste page.

As with other products used in your home, try these in small and inconspicuous areas first, and always follow manufacturers' cleaning recommendations on furniture, fixtures and carpets.


  • All Purpose Cleaner: Mix one quarter cup of vinegar with one gallon of hot water.  Keep on hand in spray bottle.

  • Abrasive Cleanser: Mix equal parts of salt and baking soda.  Scrub with mixture and wet sponge.  Rinse with all purpose cleaner and then with warm water.

  • Ant Repellents: Place chili powder, talcum powder or powdered chalk at points of entry.

  • Bathroom Cleanser: Scrub area with baking soda and wet sponge.  Rinse with all purpose cleaner.

  • Brass or Copper Polish: Mix one teaspoon salt, one tablespoon flour and enough vinegar to make a thick paste.  Rub paste on surface and let dry completely.  Rinse in warm soapy water, buff with clean soft cloth.

  • Drain Cleaner: Pour one quarter cup of baking soda down the drain: follow with one-half cup of vinegar.  After "fizzing" stops, flush with boiling water.

  • Floor Cleaner: Mix one-half cup of white vinegar with one-half gallon of warm water.

  • Furniture Polish: Mix together one-half cup of lemon juice with one cup of mineral oil.  Rub on wood furniture with soft cloth.  A mixture of 3 cups olive oil and 2 cups vinegar can also be an effective polish, just rub on wood with a soft cloth.

  • Pet Stain Cleaner: Mix together one quarter cup of white vinegar and one quarter cup of liquid soap.  Rub into stain and then blot.  Rinse with warm water.

  • Silver Polish: Put a sheet of aluminum foil in the bottom of the sink and fill with two to three inches of warm water.  Add one tablespoon each of salt and baking soda.  Place silver in water, touching foil.  Soak for one hour.  Rinse in soapy water.  Buff with soft, dry cloth.

  • Window Cleaner: Mix together three tablespoons of vinegar and one quart of hot water.  Put in spray bottle.  Spray on windows and glass.  Wipe off with crumpled newspaper or a squeegee.

  • Oven Cleaner: Scour with baking soda and water.  To prevent grease buildup, always clean spills as soon as the oven cools down.

  • Laundry Detergent: Try borax or baking soda.  Add a few drops of vinegar to keep colors bright.

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